The sun is just about to set, the weather is cooling, and most of the base is either winding down or gearing up to let off steam following that long day of duty.
It's 1700 and you're prepping for your twelve-hour graveyard shift that starts in two hours. For some night owls, this shift and these hours are nearly perfect. For most, however, the graveyard presents the ultimate test of willpower: You vs. the Sandman.
Here are five of the very best tips for surviving a graveyard shift.
For as much caffeine as the average graveyard shift worker consumes, it is really a wonder that there hasn't been some kind of corporate sponsorship put in place — or a blanket discount at the very least.
There's a reason that so many Monster, Red Bull, Rockstar, etc. are found in gate shacks and patrol cars everywhere... they do what they're supposed to do!
The base is protected by caffeine and defenders. (Image from Wikimedia Commons)
4. Push-ups (calisthenics)
Feeling a little sluggish after that mid-shift meal? Facing a sugar crash after pounding three Monsters before making it through a third of your shift? Taking heavy damage as the Sandman rains down haymakers from every angle?
Do some push-ups.
Getting the blood pumping is a surefire way to keep sleep at bay. Excitement can be hard to come by in the wee hours of the morning and you're happily serving your country. A few sets of push-ups will give you a boost and help you make it to your second wind.
For a bonus, grab a few of your also-tired comrades and have a party. (USMC photo by Cpl. Jacqueline Sanderfer)
It's not all doom and gloom at work, we can have fun... when appropriate. You'd be surprised how a couple of simple games, especially done in conjunction with duty, can make the night fly right on by.
Just make sure you're taking care of your responsibilities and not doing anything that could remotely result in NJP and you're golden.
Doing anything from this movie will get you NJP. (Image from Fox Searchlight's Super Troopers)
2. Hide and seek
Unlike the previous point, this isn't actually a game. This is all about taking advantage of how slow and quiet the base can be during a graveyard shift.
Do you job and stay out of the way.
Just trying to make it through the night. (Image from Columbia Pictures' Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2)
1. Read WATM
I mean, you're already here. Check out some of our other content, maybe a few Mighty Minutes can help get you over the hump.
Might as well take a look around, right? (Pictured: WATM host, Shannon Corbeil)